Nadal has expressed frustration over his lingering hip injury. Getty

No. 2-ranked Rafael Nadal won't compete in the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells as well as the Miami Open due to continued pain in his right hip. The Spaniard made the announcement Friday on Facebook after pulling out of the Mexico Open and after not playing a competitive match since the Australian Open.

"Unfortunately, the injury I suffered in Acapulco before starting the tournament is in the same area as the one suffered in Melbourne," read Nadal's statement. "It was very painful to retire from Acapulco, and it's very hard as well to not play in the USA. I will miss you and I will do everything that's possible to be back there in 2019."

There are lingering questions as to the severity of Nadal's hip injury after he was forced to retire in a quarterfinals match against Marin Cilic on Jan. 23. At the time, Nadal wasn't expected to be sidelined very long. Nadal's doctor, Angel Ruiz Cotorro, said that the injury mostly requires rest and rehab, and that it is relatively unusual for a tennis player.
"What Rafa has is an injury of a hip flexor muscle," Cotorro told Spanish newspaper El Espanol in January. "It has become inflamed, causing an intramuscular Grade I injury. The tendon is not inflamed so the forecast is good. Logically, we will have to be cautious for two or three weeks, with rest and physiotherapy. Then little by little, we can incorporate physical activity."

A hip injury prompted Andy Murray to have surgery in January. The Scot isn't expected to compete until at least June.

There has been no mention of surgery for Nadal. But at age 31, and after competing professionally on the ATP Tour since 2002, Nadal may not want to overextend himself in non-Grand Slam tournaments. He has also battled back, wrist, hamstring, knee and foot injuries over his career, which may cause lingering pain.

Nadal and Murray aren't alone in battling injury woes. Novak Djokovic, Stan Wawrinka, Kei Nishikori and Milos Raonic are just some of the top players who have been absent in recent months due to injury. Nadal suggested in January that the ATP should look into the number of injuries suffered by elite players.

"Somebody who is running the tour should think a little bit about what’s going on,” Nadal said. “Too many people are getting injured. I don’t know if they have to think a little bit about the health of the players.

“Not for now that we are playing, but there is life after tennis. I don’t know if we keep playing on these very, very hard surfaces what’s going to happen in the future with our lives.”

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Rafael Nadal grimaces in his match against Marin Cilic. Getty